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Basal bark treatment with triclopyr butoxyethyl ester is used to control woody invasive plants, including Brazilian peppertree (Schinus terebinthifolius Raddi). However, the ester formulation cannot be applied where standing water is present, which includes wetlands where S. terebinthifolius is found. In 2009, a low-volatile acid formulation of triclopyr was labeled for use in aquatic sites which allows for basal bark applications when standing water is present. This formulation may have utility for controlling woody plants in standing water. However, anecdotal observations of injury to non-target plants following applications during periods of inundation have been reported. To address this, mesocosm studies were conducted to assess non-target injury through triclopyr root exudation or release from the surface of treated stems via flooding. Mesocosms contained S. terebinthifolius as the treated target while sugarberry (Celtis laevigata Willd.), buttonbush (Cephalanthus occidentalis L.), and red maple (Acer rubrum L.) were included as non-targets. In the first study, the pathway of root exudation for non-target injury following triclopyr (34 g L-1) basal bark application was isolated with activated charcoal placed at the soil surface. In the second study, mesocosms were flooded to assess triclopyr release from the surface of treated stems and subsequent non-target injury. Defoliation of non-target species post-treatment was ≤ 8% and triclopyr was detected at ≤ 5 µg L-1 in mesocosm wells when activated charcoal was present. Post-treatment non-target defoliation up to 92%, coupled with triclopyr concentrations in surface waters and wells as high as 4,637 µg L-1, indicated triclopyr movement as a result of flooding. Additionally, triclopyr non-target injury from soil activity independent of flooding was observed. These findings provide limited evidence of triclopyr root exudation but considerable evidence of triclopyr release during flooding following basal bark treatment and support a cautionary approach to basal bark application when standing water is present.
Greenhouse experiments were conducted in 2020 to investigate the effects of carrier volume and sethoxydim rate on torpedograss (Panicum repens L.) control and sand cordgrass (Spartina bakeri Merr.) response from a single application. Panicum repens control and biomass reduction generally increased with increasing sethoxydim rates in evaluations at 14, 28, and 42 d after treatment (DAT); however, increasing the rate to 2X the maximum labeled rate did not always result in increased efficacy. In the first experimental run, which consisted of small plants, P. repens control and biomass reductions were largely similar among tested carrier volumes (37, 187, and 935 L ha−1). However, in run 2, which consisted of larger, mature P. repens plants, efficacy increased when carrier volume was reduced. Spartina bakeri injury increased with sethoxydim rate, reaching a maximum of 45% by 42 DAT. However, no differences in S. bakeri injury among carrier volumes were observed at 14 and 28 DAT evaluations. Spartina bakeri aboveground biomass reductions were also largely driven by sethoxydim rate increases rather than reduced carrier volumes, reaching 40% to 50% reduction in initial aboveground biomass. However, S. bakeri belowground biomass was 20% to 32% greater in treatments applied at 37 or 187 L ha−1 compared with those at 935 L ha−1. Overall, these data suggest that selective P. repens control with sethoxydim may be enhanced through reducing carrier volumes from 935 L ha−1 and that native, perennial, caespitose grasses may exhibit greater tolerance to sethoxydim compared with the rhizomatous P. repens. Future research should further test these hypotheses under field conditions at operational scales.
Mangroves are a critical component of many coastal ecosystems in Florida. Woody species, including Brazilian peppertree (Schinus terebinthifolia Raddi), have invaded thousands of hectares of mangrove habitat. The difficulty associated with ground-based management of invasive plants in mangrove communities has warranted a need to identify selective herbicides that can be applied aerially. Recent work suggests that Florida mangrove species are extremely sensitive to synthetic auxin herbicides; however, other herbicides have yet to be tested for selectivity. Greenhouse studies in 2018 and 2019 evaluated broadcast foliar applications of the acetolactate synthase inhibitor imazamox and protoporphyrinogen oxidase inhibitor carfentrazone-ethyl, both as individual treatments and in combinations, for control of S. terebinthifolia and injury to four non-target mangrove species. Across all posttreatment sample dates and species tested, there were no significant interactions between imazamox applied at 0.28 or 0.56 kg ai ha−1 in combination with carfentrazone-ethyl applied at 0 or 0.1 kg ha−1. Main effects of imazamox applied at 0.56 kg ai ha−1 and carfentrazone-ethyl applied at 0.1 kg ha−1 resulted in 99% and 97% defoliation, respectively, of Schinus terebinthifolia at 180 DAT. However, S. terebinthifolia percent survival was 56% and 44% for the same treatments. Both herbicides severely injured all four mangroves by 90 DAT and resulted in 58% to 100% defoliation across species. At 180 DAT, significant increases in percent cambium kill were also observed for all four species. Across species, mangrove survival varied, but red mangrove (Rhizophora mangle L.) survival was reduced to 6% when imazamox was applied at 0.56 kg ha−1. These results indicate both imazamox and carfentrazone-ethyl exhibit activity on S. terebinthifolia but also injure all four mangroves enough to preclude their use as selective treatments.
Brazilian peppertree (Schinus terebinthifolia Raddi) is an invasive shrub that is problematic in both freshwater wetlands and brackish mangrove communities. The complex structure, geographic remoteness, and general herbicide sensitivity of mangrove systems have resulted in great technical challenges for managers attempting selective S. terebinthifolia control. Recent advances in auxin herbicide technologies warrant herbicide screening to address this growing problem. Therefore, greenhouse experiments were conducted in 2018 and 2019 to evaluate four non-target mangrove species and S. terebinthifolia response to the three herbicides: aminocyclopyrachlor, aminopyralid, and florpyrauxifen-benyzl. Aminocyclopyrachlor controlled S. terebinthifolia, but was highly injurious to black mangrove [Avicennia germinans (L.) L.], red mangrove (Rhizophora mangle L.), white mangrove [Laguncularia racemosa (L.) C.F. Gaertn.], and buttonwood mangrove (Conocarpus erectus L.). Aminopyralid also controlled S. terebinthifolia but its impact varied across mangrove species. Laguncularia racemosa and C. erectus were highly sensitive to aminopyralid, R. mangle exhibited dose-dependent tolerance, and A. germinans was highly tolerant. Florpyrauxifen-benzyl failed to control
S. terebinthifolia and resulted in severe injury to all four mangrove species. These results indicate differential responses to newer auxins in both the target response and non-target plant community of interest. The efficacy of aminopyralid on S. terebinthifolia, coupled with its selectivity on A. germinans warrants further testing.
Burmareed [Neyraudia reynaudiana (Kunth) Keng ex Hitchc.] is an aggressive invader of pine rockland communities in south Florida. Currently, it is managed by clipping the stems and later returning, when plants have regrown to approximately 50 cm in height, to administer applications of glyphosate to new foliar growth (a “cut–return–treat,” or CRT, strategy). This multi-visit strategy is time-consuming and may result in off-target effects due to the broad-spectrum nature of glyphosate. With this study we evaluated a cut-stem (CS) approach, in which stems are cut and immediately treated with herbicide. Further, we tested the efficacy of the selective graminicides sethoxydim and fluazifop-P-butyl. In a pot study, CS treatments included: glyphosate (239.7 g ae L−1) in water, sethoxydim (9.0 g ai L−1) or fluazifop-P-butyl (12.1 g ai L−1) in either basal oil or water, and triclopyr (47.9 g ae L−1) in basal oil. All CS treatments provided mortality and growth reduction comparable to the best CRT treatments (glyphosate, sethoxydim, and fluazifop-P-butyl) and were therefore evaluated under field conditions using the same application rates. Mortality was low in the field (≤30%) regardless of herbicide treatment. Overall, fluazifop-P-butyl provided greater control than sethoxydim, resulting in 71% and 94% relative growth reduction in total shoot length with oil and water carriers, respectively, compared with 50% and 43% reduction for sethoxydim. Fluazifop also provided control similar to triclopyr and glyphosate (≥65% reduction in total shoot length). Results suggest that CS treatments may be a viable strategy for managing N. reynaudiana and reducing management costs. However, more research is needed to optimize rates. Further, fluazifop-P-butyl allows for a more selective option than glyphosate that may decrease off-target effects on native understory vegetation in pine rocklands.
The pyridine carboxylic acid (PCA) herbicide family can exhibit differential activity within and among plant species, despite molecular resemblances. Aminocyclopyrachlor (AMCP), a pyrimidine carboxylic acid, is a recently discovered compound with similar use patterns to those of the PCA family; however, relative activity among PCAs and AMCP is not well understood. Therefore, the objective of this study was to quantify relative activity among aminopyralid, picloram, clopyralid, triclopyr, and AMCP in canola, squash, and okra using dose-response whole-plant bioassays. Clopyralid was less active than all other herbicides in all species and did not fit dose-response models. Aminopyralid and picloram performed similarly in squash (ED50 = 21.1 and 23.3 g ae ha−1, respectively). Aminopyralid was 3.8 times and 1.7 times more active than picloram in canola (ED50 = 60.3 and 227.7 g ha−1, respectively) and okra (ED50 = 10.3 and 17.3 g ha−1, respectively). Triclopyr (ED50 = 37.3 g ha−1) was more active than AMCP (ED50 = 112.9 g ha−1) and picloram in canola. Aminocyclopyrachlor (ED50 = 6.6 g ha−1) and triclopyr (ED50 = 7.8 g ha−1) were more active in squash than aminopyralid and picloram. In okra, AMCP (ED50 = 14.6 g ha−1) and aminopyralid (ED50 = 10.3 g ha−1) performed similarly but were more active than triclopyr (ED50 = 88.2 g ha−1). Herbicidal activity among AMCP and PCAs was vastly different despite molecular similarities that could be due to variable target-site sensitivity among species.
Common reed [Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trin. ex Steud.], an aggressive invader in North American wetlands, is likely to undergo a range expansion as the climate changes. Increased atmospheric [CO2] and temperature have been shown to cause morphological and physiological changes in many species, sometimes altering the way they respond to herbicides. To understand how climate-related environmental parameters may impact P. australis management, we grew two P. australis haplotypes (the Gulf Coast type and the Eurasian type) under ambient (400 ppm CO2, 32/21 C) or elevated (650 ppm CO2, 35/24 C) climate conditions. After 6 wk, the Gulf Coast type had reduced leaf area, increased stomatal conductance, and increased transpiration under the elevated conditions. The Eurasian type had lower Vcmax (the maximum carboxylation rate of Rubisco) and lower Jmax (the maximum electron transport rate of RuBP regeneration) under elevated climate conditions. Results likely reflected a greater impact of higher temperatures rather than increased [CO2]. After the 6-wk period, plants were either treated with glyphosate (0.57 kg ae ha−1) or remained an untreated control. Data were collected 30 d after treatment (DAT) and 60 DAT to evaluate herbicide efficacy. Overall, the Gulf Coast type was less responsive to glyphosate applications under the elevated climate conditions than under current climate conditions. The lower leaf area of the Gulf Coast type in these climate conditions may have resulted in less herbicide interception and uptake. Glyphosate efficacy was less impacted by climate treatment for the Eurasian type than for the Gulf Coast type.
Cogongrass is commonly found in disturbed areas in Florida, where it is increasingly becoming a problem in bahiagrass pastures. Soil pH has been suggested as a possible mechanism for this invasion; to evaluate this, replacement series competition studies were conducted under greenhouse conditions at two soil pH levels: pH 4.5, or pH 6.8. Cogongrass ramets and bahiagrass seedlings were planted at proportions of 0:40, 1:20, 2:10, 4:1, and 8:0, respectively. Aboveground biomass was measured after 8 weeks and used to calculate relative yield, relative crowding coefficients, and aggressivity values. At soil pH 4.5, the relative competitiveness of cogongrass and bahiagrass was similar, with both species contributing equally to relative yield. At soil pH 6.8, bahiagrass seedlings showed greater competitive ability than cogongrass ramets. Relative crowding coefficient and aggressivity values supported this, with bahiagrass showing increased competitiveness under higher soil pH. This indicates that decreases in soil pH, often associated with poor soil fertility, is likely a contributing factor for cogongrass invasion into bahiagrass pastures. Soil amendments to raise pH may provide a cultural management tool for cogongrass infestations in pastures.
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